Queerty Interview Part III

Chris Crocker Reveals The Private Britney Epiphany You Never Knew

IMG_5918Probably the most surprising thing about Chris Crocker is that he’s quiet, gentle and preternaturally calm. In part one and two of our interview with Chris and his boyfriend Justin, we talked about his changing persona and his porn career. Now, in part three, we’ll delve into how his personal life might surprise you.

When last we spoke, Chris mentioned that he was disillusioned to discover that many of his old role models were actually messy disasters.

Who do you look up to now?

C: I did a video a while back that I think was really misunderstood. I ripped down my Britney posters and the only poster I left up was my own. And I said I want to have no false idols, I want to be my own idol. And so I feel like a lot of people really waste energy looking up to people, because then your energy is so focused what they’re doing, and you’re not putting your energy into yourself.

And I definitely have people I take inspiration from. I wouldn’t model my career after them but I love Lena Dunham, who has always been a huge inspiration. My muse is Fiona Apple. And Courtney Love. … I think I love her not as a role model for me, but just as a kindred spirit. I can really really relate with her. Because I’ve had those crazy years, and I think now she’s yearning for some stability. And I think she has such a reputation that it’s hard for her to overcome that. I definitely relate with that. Constantly having to prove to herself.

What do you do to relax?

C: Honestly, it’s very simple. I’m a modern traditionalist. So if I can just scroll through Tumblr and have a coffee in one hand, and be playing Fiona Apple, with no one in the house, that is the ultimate nirvana for me. I’m so boring.

That seems at odds with how you’re perceived.

C: I’m boring. I’m not headstrong.

Justin: He doesn’t even like to go out to eat with people. Or if we make friends out one night, we don’t talk to them during the day.

C: I’m very closed off. This right here is probably the most energetic I get. … I honestly don’t know how to explain where that [on-camera] energy comes from. I’ll just be picking up on energy and irritations, whether it’s someone I’m working with at the barber shop and whoever annoyed me, and I’ll take it out on the camera, and then I’m done. It’s my message in a bottle to the universe. And then I’m peaceful. … All they’re seeing is this wound up toy of a person at all times. And it’s quite honestly once that camera turns off I yawn and I’m like all right, time to relax. It’s like an exorcism.

How do you feel about the documentary?

IMG_5985C: I think they fulfilled their vision of the film greatly. But I don’t know that it’s possible to one hundred percent love your story being told through other people. … A lot of what was filmed was me in character. I felt like there was a lot of things that they shot that were not used that were very key to telling the story.

Like what?

C: I had an epiphany during filming, no bullshit, I had never even thought about the parallels between my mom and Britney going through what they were going through in the same year. And granted I had always loved Britney. My mom became homeless the same year that Britney was going through what she was going through. And I could not fathom why everyone was being so harsh to a mother whose world is crumbling. And then my own family was giving up on my mother. So whether you want to look at the family as what I saw as the world giving up on Britney, I was constantly having to defend my mom, “She’ll get her shit together eventually.”

She was on meth. And I was putting her in hotels every week and paying for this and that. And there was so much of that stress in my life, and for the first time ever on camera … I put that piece together and I had a real true epiphany, and it was a beautiful thing to piece that together and I was crying and it was true emotion. And it was the best thing that they had shot, in my opinion, the entire time. And they chose not to use it. They had me repeat what I had thought but they didn’t want to show that magical powerful moment. And I was like, why? It was just puzzling to me, because it almost felt like they wanted to give themselves more credit for peiceing it together than give me the credit for being the subject who’s really figuring these things out for himself, and why he did the things he did. Because for so many years when you’re filming … you’re not thinking about why you did this or that.

All I will say is I don’t think anybody who is the subject of a documentary can be one hundred percent happy with someone else telling their story, because there’s always going to be pieces that meant a lot to you that weren’t in there.

So what are your goals for 2014?

C: I’m never one to just say, definitively, I want to do this. I just want to be happy. And continue to follow my creative muses. And hopefully it’ll leave me in the right place.

[An advice show] is really what I want to develop. … I really would love an opportunity to be more conversational and have a discussion, whether it’s girls going through a breakup or domestic violence, since my mom went through that. Whatever it is, I love giving advice and really listening to people.

Way better than I like talking, believe it or not.

Read Part I of Matt Baume’s exclusive Queerty interview with Chris Crocker

Read Part II 

Read Part III